Please see below to see how we promote children's personal development throughout our school.
We are proud of the opportunities pupils have to lead and be change-makers at our school. Pupils from both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 have the opportunity to join one of our many leadership groups who meet regularly with staff to provide the important voice of their peers.
We have recently seen the exciting launch of our School Parliament. Representatives from each of our pupil leadership groups have come together to work towards achieving real change.
Our parliament is made up of representatives from our School Council, Social Action Team, Liturgy leaders, Reading Ambassadors, Attendance Ambassadors, eCadets and Art Ambassadors. Each of these groups works well separately, but our hope is that together they can be stronger, with a shared purpose to improve aspects of school life and wider issues around the world.
Our parliamentary representatives have been tasked with trialling some 'youth led research.' This will be an issue chosen by the children, questions written by the children, with the audience also chosen by them. The theory being that their peers are far more likely to respond openly to research led by their friends, rather than other adults in school.
The focus for each meeting of parliament will be influenced by our, half-termly, Catholic Social Teaching focus. This half-term is 'Rights and Responsibilities.' A perfect theme to focus on the rights that children should have, along with the responsibilities they hold to better our school and the wider world.
Head Boy and Head Girl
All children in Year Six have the opportunity to apply for the important roles of Head Boy and Head Girl. All applicants are required to write and share a presentation to the Head teacher and Deputy Head teacher, sharing their vision for the role over the forthcoming academic year. They then receive a formal interview.
Each year the successful candidates are required to represent their peers as the ‘faces of our school.’ They might meet and greet important visitors and lead tours of our school site, highlighting areas that they believe are strengths. At times they might be required to lead assemblies and to present awards to other children in our school.
Both Head Boy and Head Girl also lead our School Council. In this role, they are required to construct agendas and to record minutes of each meeting.
Our School Council includes two members from each year group, who are voted in to the role by their class peers. This vote takes place at the start of each year and is a wonderful opportunity for children to see democracy in action.
One important task undertaken by our School Council, each year, is to write a ‘Children’s SEF (School Self- Evaluation.) This enables us to really gauge the thought and opinions of our most important school stakeholders.
Other recent achievements from our School Council are the reinstatement of the full salad bar during lunchtimes; better zoning of the playground, during break times and ensuring that school participates fully in Children in Need fundraising, each year.
Each year two children from Year Six are democratically elected to represent each of our four house groups. Children from each house group meet together and listed to speeches made by each candidate. They then vote for their preferred choice, those with the top two highest amount of votes being successful.
Our house captains are required to collect house points from each class, each week. They then support in our Friday ‘Congratulations Assembly’ by each offering a motivational speech, to encourage their house group members to aim high, during the following week.
House captains also support during any house sporting events that take place throughout the year. They have a significant role during each year’s sports day.
Social Action Team
Our Social Action Team contains representatives from each year group. They are united in their passion to look after our environment and to tackle climate change. They also seek to uphold and promote our Catholic Social Teachings. As a team they are a hard working force for good and should be rightly proud of their achievements.
Recently they have established links with a home for older people, most of whom have dementia. Visits have included taking baked treats for the residents. Taking some musical instruments, to help build positive relationships and stimulate memories. They also visited with our sports coach and led some gentle throwing and catching exercises, to support fitness and co-ordination.
At school the team have focused on repurposing older pieces of furniture. Some old tray units that would have been thrown away have been painted and adapted to now provide beautiful art and music display units in our school corridors.
Through fundraising, the Social Action Team have raised significant funds. Recently they have independently chosen to:
Purchase a goat for a family in Africa (through CAFOD)
Purchase a winter survival pack for another family in the world
Fund the teaching of reading for four children in the world
Pay for eight residents from the local home for older people (and their individual carers) to enjoy a Christmas lunch at our school.
All of the Social Action Team’s combined efforts are also significantly contributing to the achievement of CAFOD’s Live Simply Award.
We consider ourselves to be a ‘Reading School’ at St. John’s and our Reading Ambassadors are contributing significantly to the positive reading culture that we have established.
Our ambassadors are made up of children with differing reading abilities but who all share a passion for reading. Their main role is to read books that are new into school and to read and review them, with the intention of encouraging interest in others. Their reviews are published in our school newsletters. There chosen texts are also displayed around school for their friends to choose.
Each year group has an Attendance Ambassador. Their role is to motivate and encourage their friends to uphold the highest attendance possible. Ambassadors receive an envelope during each Monday’s assembly. Within the envelope is each class’ attendance percentage, for the previous week, along with a reward star for the highest attending class to place on their class reward chart.
Each year group has two Liturgy Leaders. They are in place to help to lead and support the faith life of our school. They contribute to school policy and monitor prayer services and the school environment, alongside the RE Leader. Our Liturgy Leaders also support by leading extra-curricular clubs, e.g. Rosary Club.